Forklift Trade-In Value: Tips to Get the Most Out of Your Trade-In

Is it time for a new forklift?

A good working forklift is important for maximizing your warehouse efficiency and profits. You don't want to be without one for long or your business may suffer.

If you're trading in your old forklift for a new and improved one, there are some steps you can take to ensure you get the most value out of your forklift trade-in. 

Do Your Research

To ensure you get the best value for your forklift trade-in, you must know what it is worth. If you settle on the first offer provided, you could miss out on a lot of money.

Your forklift value will depend on its age, hours of use, and condition. Its value will decline over time and with added work hours. If it isn't very old, but has been used a ton, then its value will be less despite its age. In opposition, if your forklift is older, but has barely been used, it should have a higher trade-in value.

Parts will influence your trade-in value, too. Traders will consider whether the battery and charger are included and still work. They will also think about the mast specifications. Generally, the bigger and higher maximum load capacity, the more it’s worth.

Fuel type is also important. Forklifts that run on gas or propane are less valuable when compared those that run on diesel or electric.

An easy way to get an estimate of your forklift trade-in value is by looking up the wholesale value for the model. Most dealers will pay around the wholesale price if the forklift is in good condition and doesn't have too many work hours.

Once you have the wholesale price, think about how much you have invested in the machine as well as the retail price. Have you updated any parts? How much have you put in for maintenance? Consider these aspects when deciding the price you're willing to sell or trade for.

Clean--Appearance Matters

Appearance makes more of a difference than you might think. If your forklift is in great working condition, but looks run down and dirty, you're not going to get what it’s worth during the forklift trade-in.

Perform an inspection and take the time to make your forklift look new. Wash the exterior and interior. Clean the handles, seat, and pedals. Don't forget the tires and wheels. Newer tires and wheels can make a big difference in first impressions. 

Lastly, make sure to remove tools and any other personal belongings. You want the forklift to look like it's ready to be sold off the lot.

Organize Maintenance Records and Documents

Documentation will help you bargain. Find all the documents that show proof of ownership, receipt of purchase, and any warranties that may have come with the forklift.

You should also gather up your maintenance records. These show that the forklift has had maintenance regularly, which extends its life and prevents issues. Maintenance records also show your forklift's history and condition.

Maintenance records and receipts are also helpful in showing what items have been repaired or upgraded, and that you have been operating it safely. This will help you and the dealer determine what the forklift is worth considering newer parts and tuning.

"Sell it"

By "sell it" we don't mean sell it rather than trade it. We mean, sell it to the dealer with a strong pitch and smart business negotiating.

Even though a trade is not a sale, it is a business transaction. Therefore, it should be treated professionally, and you should be prepared to negotiate.

Start your pitch to the dealer by highlighting the best parts of the forklift. Always start positive and never add a negative comment. Work from the most attractive feature to the least. Talk up the condition, the age, and any recent additions or upgrades.

If there are issues with the forklift, you should be honest about them. It helps to follow them up with a compliment though. For example, if it needs new tires, you can explain how the tires lasted you “X” number of years. Research the estimated costs for any repairs needed and present them to the dealer during your discussions.

Be Flexible

Sometimes the hardest part of trading in something is negotiating the value. If you want to get the most out of your trade, you'll have to be reasonable and flexible.

A dealer is not going to give you a good trade if you're too stubborn or hard to work with. While it’s important to stand your ground when you know your forklift's worth, it is also important to remember that a trade is not a sell. You are not looking to make money off the forklift, but rather to save money on the new one.

When negotiating, think about the value of the new forklift in the process. Sometimes the age and model of the new forklift will help you decide on a trade-in value. For example, you may get less than what you hoped for the old forklift, but the final price of the new one makes it worth it.

Always remember that once you have your new forklift, you can get back to work and back to being productive and making money.

Ready to Start Your Forklift Trade In?

If you're ready to trade in your forklift for a new and improved model, then look no further. At Carolina Industrial Trucks, we gladly accept trade ins for new forklifts.

We carry Hyundai, UniCarriers, and Komatsu forklift brands in various styles and sizes. We're sure to have the right forklift to fit your needs. Check them out here and contact us today to set up a time to come by.